Only Online Auction

Hong Kong, Mar 03, 2021

LOT 272

Savoye Frères & Co.
Pocket watch, early “in view” chronograph; 18K pink gold

HKD 14,100 - 28,200

CHF 1,650 - 3,300 / EUR 1,500 - 3,000 / USD 1,850 - 3,700

Sold: HKD 18,750

18K pink gold, open-face, keyless-winding, round-shaped, pocket watch, subsidiary seconds at 6 and one horological complication:
· 1/5 second chronograph (activated by the round push-piece located on the winding-crown) with tachometric scale graduated for 300 metres; safety bolt locking the chronograph’s functions (slide at 1 o’clock)

Case-back guilloché engine-turned, engraved in taille-douce (fine cut) with the cypher “E L”. Glazed cuvette (dome).

Movement 20’’’, gilded brass, going barrel, gold train of wheels, straight-line equilibrated lever escapement, cut bimetallic compensated balance with gold poising screws and blued steel hairspring with terminal curve, polished steel index-regulator; early “in view” chronograph mechanism with detent-type levers and gold wheels.

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Grading System
Grade: AA

Very good

Case: 3-11


Slightly worn

Movement: 3 *
Dial: 3-01


HANDS Original

Brand Savoye Frères & Co, Besançon (France)

Year circa 1875-1880

Movement No. 132 795

Case No. 12 786 (by “A P”, probably Besançon)

Material 18K pink gold

Diameter 55 mm.

Caliber 20’’’, gold train of wheels, straight-line equilibrated lever escapement

Weight 126.8 gr. (approx.)

Signature case and movement


“In view” chronograph

The modern chronograph, with functions “start”, “stop” and “return to zero”, was invented in London in 1861 by Adolphe Nicole (British invention patent No. 1 461 of May 14, 1862) and presented at the Universal Exhibition of London in 1862. Henri-Féréol Piguet (?-?), a watchmaker also from the Vallée de Joux – who then worked (1859-1861) for Nicole & Capt in London – will later claim paternity (1883).

In 1868, a Genevan watchmaker, Auguste Baud (1825-1894), decided to place the entire chronograph mechanism behind the calibre of the watch, which facilitates assembly and adjustment; this is called the “in view” chronograph.

Very quickly, he worked with Adrien Philippe (1815-1894), one of the founders of Patek Philippe, and together develop, in the years 1870-1880, many watches for the Genevan manufacture. In 1878, during the Universal Exhibition of Paris, Auguste Baud obtains a bronze medal for his invention.

Watchmakers from Geneva and the Vallée de Joux, but also from Besançon, adopt this invention and develop new products on this basis by adding, for example, time counters. These counters are available in thirty or sixty minutes, to which can be added a counter of hours, which allows long periods of time, such as the duration of a journey by train.